By Wendy Culverwell
Tri-City Herald (Kennewick, Wash.)
WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) With “Red Mountain Commercial Kitchen” Owner Courtney Bauer and her two daughters hope to help food entrepreneurs launch the businesses of their dreams.
The Mid-Columbia’s newest commercial kitchen opens Dec. 1 in downtown Kennewick.
Red Mountain Commercial Kitchen is the brainchild of Chris Bauer and her daughters, Courtney Bauer and Alanna Lindblom. Together, they are converting the former Music Machine building, 212 W. Kennewick Ave., into a commercial food hub.
Where guitars and music gear once reigned, a commercial kitchen, baking kitchen, prep area, flex space, demonstration kitchen and washing facilities are nearly ready for vendors to get to work. Music Machine closed two years ago when owner Rick van Heel moved to Chicago.
Red Mountain Commercial Kitchen is modeled loosely on the Pasco Specialty Kitchen, a city-backed commercial kitchen that incubates food start-ups.
Like PSK, Red Mountain will rent commercial quality kitchen space to start-up businesses, with an eye to bolstering the local food scene.
Red Mountain, which is privately owned, is taking a more flexible approach to serving customers.
Kitchen space will rent by the hour rather than by membership.
Vendors aren’t required to secure a local business license to use the kitchen, though they must have Washington Food Worker Cards and name the kitchen on their insurance.
Most clients will be food professionals, but not all. If someone wants to get all their canning for the year done at once, they can lease space to do it.
If a restaurant or food producer is branching into the Tri-City market and needs a place to demonstrate its product, the kitchen stands ready.
With Red Mountain, Courtney Bauer hopes to help the Mid-Columbia find its food voice.
She sees it as a perfect complement to Columbia Basin College’s proposed culinary school at Port of Kennewick-owned property near the cable bridge.